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Door Speaker Recommendations

Joined
10 October 2004
Messages
1,115
Location
Wichita, KS
Yeah, I've read some previous posts on this topic, but thought I'd see if any constructive feedback would result from my specific questions.

I've been a fan of a/d/s and boston acoustic products years back and am looking for a good set of component speakers for the doors. I'm leaning towards the boston acoustic Z6, but hoping for some feedback from the forum.

I have an a/d/s PQ20 that I plan to drive the door speakers only. I'd like to try bi-amp so the Z6 speakers (3-ohm) will go okay with the 80Wx4 (4-ohm) per channel on the PQ20. Couldn't bridge though due to the 3-ohm load.

1. Is there any other recommendations for component speakers in the under $600 range that is more bang for buck compared to the Z6?

2. Anyone have experince with mix and matching passive crossovers, tweeters and mids that result in a better sound experience for the NSX?


As for personal tastes, I want it all (who doesn't). Audiophile sound quality, but when you crank it up, the speakers handle the power without breaking.

Another vote for the Z6 design is that I want to first start with locating the tweeters near the mids (keeping the car stock). Then if I just can't live with it, I would relocate the tweeters up near the door defrost vent (as others have). The Z6 has a bracket that locates the tweeter in a coaxial orientation, which is a plus in my opinion.

Any recommendations?
Shaun
 
Once you get above a certain price range, I'd say about $300, it's all personal preference. Funny you should mention BA, this coming weekend I should complete the install of 2 NSXs both with BA Proseries. The shop owner carries every conceivable high end brand and his preference is BA. I like the Focals as do some of his staff and the others like JL, Dynaudio and Diamond. There used to be a $199 set of Directed Electronics (yes, the Viper company) components that would rival home speakers even and they still make great speakers. The owners I'm working on couldn't justify the extra $$$ for the Z series. You toss a good 1/3 octave EQ on a decent set of components and you can rival almost anything.

If you don't have a 1/3 octave EQ, I wouldn't mess around with any other crossovers unless you're looking for trouble. Crossovers are designed specifically for the components and often contain equalization circuitry as well.

There's plenty of components under $600 that would give the Z series a run for the money but you have to listen to them to decide what they are. Take a look at Focal, Eclipse, MB Quart, Diamond, JL Audio, and even DEI & MTX.

There's a lot to like about the engineering on the BA speakers. A couple things I didn't like were the foam gaskets that came with the Proseries didn't fit. The crossovers even when using 1/2" MDF were just a tad too large to fit in the door. We had to shave off the speaker panel and mount to the door itself (we tried numerous times in many positions and it was just too big). Those stupid hex screws, argh! But they did come with a great tweeter pod that you can use to mount to the triangle sash pieces in the door. That bracket that mounts the tweeter coaxially is sweet, awesome piece of engineering. One of the cars I'm working on will have it mounted as such.

As for tweeter mounting in the door near the vents, I have mine that way and would discourage you from putting them there. I don't like the dead spot created for the passenger because the steering column blocks the path of the tweeter. It's fine for the driver but I hate having that obstruction. My next project is going to be to move the tweeters elsewhere.
 
I love my Seas Lotus Reference - in a comparitive side/side test with an NSX with Utopias made them sound sad. (sorry Malibu) They are easy to bi-amp having individual C/O's for each component. Bit above your budget though. However the Lotus Performance series is a good deal at $479.
I enjoyed my CDT Eurosports also. The mids are really excellent although I think the tweeter could be better (being really picky - they're still good).
http://www.cdtaudio.com/620testreport.htm

http://www.seaslotus.com
The US distributor is at http://www.mobilesq.com/ - its seems to be down right now, was OK earlier today.
On a more budget conscious end Malibu & I have both been independently impressed by Eclipse SC 8264 - Elctronic Giant is closing these out at $200! (I think they're last year's model)
 
SEAN, even though i work at diamond i (gulp) have some boston Z6 speakers i could sell you. I actually have like 15 pair. we bought them from a dealer who wanted to drop the line and replace it with diamond. we bought them to free up his cash flow for our products. If you are interested please let me know. they are brand new in the box say $500 a set?
 
1. Is there any other recommendations for component speakers in the under $600 range that is more bang for buck compared to the Z6?
as to answer that question...well yeah any of our products :) (had to say it ya know)
 
D'Ecosse said:
I love my Seas Lotus Reference - in a comparitive side/side test with an NSX with Utopias made them sound sad. (sorry Malibu)

It's all personal preference, I don't even run the Utopias myself because I actually like K2 series I have better! Cost was no object in my listening test and I performed as blind a listening test as I could have in the shop (this is a very well equipped shop). My sales guy knew my background and let me at the controls. Using the same source material, same deck, same amps, I picked the speakers that I felt sounded best in the store which was to give some indication of how they would sound in the car. Also important was listening to them off axis since they would be so far off axis in our cars. The Dynaudio was a close 2nd but that european tweeter did not provide good detail. I don't like harsh tweeters but I dislike tweeters that are hushed down even more because that's a lot harder to fix than a bright tweeter. The big kicker was the off axis response of the tweeter. I was really skeptical of the Focal tweeter design and was impressed in this respect. All of the stuff I read and heard from others with regard to Focal and other brands I found was so wrong most of the time. Most of the opinions I read on audio forums were completely useless. That's why I say it's so important to go by your ears versus hearsay. There is so much brand loyalty and so little science in car audio, it's pretty sad sometimes.

As for my speakers, I love the Focals I have but that's not to say you won't find something better for your tastes so I would never really advise anyone to buy the speakers I have, but certainly give them a listen. Best thing was they weren't the most crazy super expensive ones like the Utopia-Be. But with anything else, you make something expensive enough, people will buy it just because of the price. It's completely possible to buy something that sounds awesome and costs a lot less than the "high end" stuff. That's always the hallmark of a good audio salesperson, too. The guy that says "listen to this" versus "you should buy this because it's the best."

I'd advise anyone, let your ears do the judging. Listen to the brands that others recommend but don't let their opinions sway yours. Also practice good science when listening to the speakers. Stick with the same crossover points, same amps, same source material, and get into the same positions.
 
Excellent advice from all the above. Man, I am glad I asked!

As for the issue of crossover location, I planned to locate them in the trunk next to the amp. The Z6 crossovers are way huge to put in a door and have tweeter level, SQ adjustment and of course the ability to switch from biamp to full range. Also, I'm a little squeemish about putting a crossover in a door panel just in case a protection fuse blows. I like the easy access to the c/o.

Ken, thanks for the good words about the tweeter location. I previously had a Miata and located the tweeters similar to where yours are. The sound in the drivers seat was not too bad, but yeah - that steering wheel is an issue for passenger seat. That's why I want to start with coax at the door and see if I can't just solve the problem with super clean power and biamp level control. Also, I'd like to come as close as possible for the passenger seat to sound as good as the drivers seat. (dreaming, I know)

I imaging most speakers in the $300 plus range sound about as good as the other. One of my main issues is to really hit that volume knob once in a while and see just how loud it can go and still be clean. That's where I hope you get what you pay for.

So, I'll give it some thought but looks like I've already found a best buddy source in Arizona for a great price on some Z6s!

Thanks for all the great advice.
Shaun
 
Shaun Ray said:
As for the issue of crossover location, I planned to locate them in the trunk next to the amp. The Z6 crossovers are way huge to put in a door and have tweeter level, SQ adjustment and of course the ability to switch from biamp to full range. Also, I'm a little squeemish about putting a crossover in a door panel just in case a protection fuse blows. I like the easy access to the c/o.

I haven't seen crossovers with fuse protection. But sometimes it is nice to be able to get to them easily especially if they have attenuation adjustments. The Z6 x-overs actually look smaller than the Proseries do. The nice thing about the Proseries is that the crossover can split in half. You'd be surprised at how large of a crossover you can fit in the door, the problem with the Proseries wasn't the length or width, it was the height. Hence removing a section of our speaker baffle enabled us to keep the crossover in the driver side door. It fit fine with the baffle in the passenger door because the driver side door has the mirror plug which prohibited us from mounting the crossover in the same location as the passenger door.

An added advantage of running crossovers in the door is that you only need to run one set of speaker wire into the door if your tweeter and mid stay in the door. If you bi-amp or bi-wire then it doesn't matter, you're gonna run 2 sets of wires regardless. Just minor details to keep in mind. :)

Good luck!
 
Sorry about the mix up. I was refering to Malibu. As for fuses in crossovers, I had a set of a/d/s 320i crossovers that would use a 1amp fuse for tweeter protection (or crossover protection if the tweeter wires shorted). Blowing these fuses is probably more common than one would think.

All the advice is good, probably didn't need to single Bradley out. Thanks all.
Shaun
 
No offense taken over mix-up - I can think of worse people I could be confused with! Malibu (Bradley) knows his stuff & deserving of his excellent reputation.
 
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